Steel

10314297-welder-at-the-factory-working-with-metal-construction

 

Many’s the thing that steels a man

Brings to the higher plain

Some of it breathing loveliness

Some of it washed in pain

Things that were not commendable

Things he would have erased

But they are each a messenger

Drawing to Jesus’ face.

Such is the man by Grace renewed

Such is God’s “normal” heart

Deaf to the words of fashion’s craze

Set from the world apart.

And he will wonder of a time

Which is the wiser track

‘Til in some prayerful niche sublime

Jesus will call him back.

Back to embrace the One True Friend

Pearl of great price revealed

Pathways beneath His noble gaze

Leave the saint strong and “steeled”.

 

(Matthew 13: 44-46)

Final Post-Lord is it Mine (Orchestra version) performed by Roger Hodgson

This will be my final post, thank you Doug for all your kindnesses.

http://youtu.be/R-C2bHm2yr4

For Doug and Hilary to take along in heart on the next scenic outing, all my love God Bless.

http://salvoesinfaith.wordpress.com/2014/06/08/on-a-branch/

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(lyrics)

I know that there’s a reason why I need to be alone
You’ve shown me there’s a silent place that I can call my own
Is it mine, oh Lord, is it mine?

You know I get so weary from the battles in this life
And as many times it seems that you’re the only hope in sight
Is it mine, oh Lord, is it mine?

When everything’s dark
And nothing seems right
There’s nothing to win
And there’s no need to fight

I never cease to wonder at the cruelty of this land
But it seems a time of sadness is a time to understand
Is it mine, oh Lord, is it mine?

When everything’s dark
And nothing seems right
You don’t have to win
And there’s no need to fight

If only I could find a way to feel your sweetness through the day
The love that shines around me could be mine

So give us an answer, won’t you
We know what we have to do
There must be a thousand voices
Trying to get through.

(Roger Hodgson)

Anthony

The “To-Do List”

 

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In so many places in the New Covenant we are shown what to believe; the pegs upon which to hang resolutely our deepest hopes. Romans 10 says much about this.

But what to do?

The other day I was impressed with the commands of Matthew 25. Jesus is approaching His departure. Quite naturally He would want His last words to  His friends to have significant lasting impact. The setting is the Mount of Olives and all the disciples are present.

He gives three images:

1. A group of ten virgins await the night-time arrival of the bridegroom for a great celebration.

2. A departing King dispenses resources to three of His servants that they might occupy in His absence.

3. A King has returned to a throne of judgment to separate with grave finality those who have lived to please Him (sheep) from those who have not (goats).

We are still in that period of waiting for the Glorious Return. We are told here never to allow our sense of expectancy and readiness (lamp-oil) to run low. There have been talents invested in us that we are to put to profitable use in the agenda of the Kingdom. He knows our capabilities. It is the quality not quantity of our response that matters. There will be an accounting that will disclose the real leanings of the heart toward our Great Employer. Jesus reminds us of His “brethren” in need – the hungry, the thirsty, the poorly clothed, the awkward lonely stranger, the sick and the imprisoned. That is the list of mercy targets, just as in the days of His earth walk. That is where His family is to be found, ourselves included.

The list is clear. The opportunities come forth surprisingly. The Spirit of Christ within responds as in the age-old Gospel way.

 

(above image – the widow’s mite)

That Ladder

Originally posted on justhappeneduponthis:

(Today’s entry in Come Ye Apart by J. R. Miller)

“I am the way& no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

John 14:6

A way always leads somewhere: Jesus is the way from earth to heaven, and also from heaven to earth. Through Him we get to God, and through Him God comes to us. He is the true and only ladder whose foot rests on the earth, and whose top reaches up to the very glory of God. In His humanity Jesus comes down to the lowest depths of human need and sorrow. Had He been God only, and not man, He could not have done this. The incarnation was the letting of the ladder down until it rested in the deepest valleys. There is now no spot of shame or guilt in this world from which there is not a ladder of light, with its celestial…

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Afflicted No Longer

 

young-man-kneeling

There must be a freeing of the mind and heart from the shackles of hopelessness. Hospitals are full of stories of remarkable reversals of illness simply because of the indomitable spirit of the patient. A pleasant word; a good confession; a smile; an ability always to laugh; an audacity even in the face of death.

I know of many well-intentioned Christians who will give by memory every promise of healing contained in the Bible, and there are many. But perhaps the candidate for healing does not yet have an assurance of Jesus’ loving disposition toward him.

The ever victorious progression of thought and faith must be as follows. Jesus is proved history. As all-capable Son of God He came from Heaven, taught Heaven and its ethic, returned to Heaven and dwells there presently, working on the development of His Church in partnership with the Father and Spirit. He loves me and has shown me as much in undeniable ways. I thrill to read the account of His earth walk, selfless death and resurrection in the Gospels. I honestly regard Him as my best friend, and place my life and expectations in His hands. I trust Him more than I trust my own wants or understanding. He will bring about the best of all possible good either in me or through me. He has never done less with anyone who has reached out to Him.

This sort of abandon brings people to an experience of salvation. It comes as a consequence of the gift of repentance. It comes as the Lord draws the believer to Him. It is not manufactured by persuasion or resolve. The same applies to healing. A well-intentioned Christian worker might place the raw materials of truth, warning and promise before a candidate; offer to pray; continue to lift that individual up in the following weeks.

But God will be the One who closes the deal. The victorious recipient, the honest-to-goodness child of faith is the one who can say, as with Job, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him”.

For such a one there remain no dark corridors to be traveled. The victory has come from within. The happy old Gospel song asserts, “The world didn’t give it to me, and the world can’t take it away”.

The Flyer

The postman had no kids.

He thoroughly enjoyed the ones he met on his route.

Young Chris was probably top of the list. His Mom living single and working two part-time jobs.

Billing reminders were often in her mail.

It was a Sunday morning, off-duty, when he delivered the  Red Flyer Wagon to the back door of their apartment. Their reaction brought tears to everyone. An invitation for coffee was extended. The young lad was out to the street, the sidewalk and the hill. He shouted to the old neighbour three doors down, “See my wagon. What a neat gift. From a friend. Look out hill. Here I come.”

The leg push with the right leg was rhythm-less at first, but the stride began to lengthen as he thought more about the kindness extended to him. His breathing became steady. His back got into the effort. Yes, this was one of the most special of days.

He reached the crest of the hill and realized just how easy the thrilling run was going to be. He continued the leg movement and the smiles. Herein ends the lesson on the power of being thankful.

Everlastingly

Dear Lord you give us this time to discover the stuff we’re made of, and to aspire to the stuff of which Jesus is made.

You give us a friend or two in order to understand place, pathos, forgiveness and healing power.

You give us a cause to recognize the predominant evil in this world of men, and to ignite to the small present opportunity, mustard-seed small, to turn the tide to something clean and caring.

You give us music and art to explore the indecipherable, and to hold one’s breath so as not to miss a single impulse.

You give us children to rescue the sense of wonder, and to discipline us into kindly letting go.

You give us work to hone a skill, and to battle impatience, self-importance and monotony.

You give us Heaven everlastingly, for the asking, and a sparkling river runs through it.

Love presides.